239 Employed Compassion

Based on research by McClelland, Laura E., and Vogus, Timothy J. (2014) written by Mara Rowcliffe, MS.

What is likely to influence how hospitalized patients perceive their care? Patients rate their care as high quality when staff are attentive and responsive to their individual preferences and needs, i.e., when staff notice, feel, and respond to their suffering.

A psychology research study examined the benefits of compassion practices on patient hospital ratings of care quality. Organizational practices known as compassion practices include such behaviors as rewarding employees for acts of care and thoughtfulness shown to patients, families, and other employees, and providing formal awards that acknowledge employees who go above and beyond to care for their patients. The study surveyed 270 U.S. top-level hospital executives and compared their compassion practices ratings to publicly reported patient satisfaction data. The results revealed that when a hospital deliberately rewards kind acts by its staff and supports its staff during difficult times, their patients are more likely to highly rate their care experience and recommend the hospital to a friend.

Whether in a hospital, clinic, business, or family, encourage compassion and support of your colleagues and family members, and everyone will be more satisfied, including you!


McClelland, L. E., & Vogus, T. J. (2014). Compassion practices and HCAHPS: does rewarding and supporting workplace compassion influence patient perceptions?. Health services research, 49(5), 1670-1683.

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